32 Deals That Make Waking Up From Your Food Coma Worth it on Black Friday

Photo of smiling young woman drinking first morning coffee in her bed, and reading online news on a smart phone
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By now, you’ve flipped through the Sunday paper and pulled out the Black Friday ads. Or, because it’s 2018, you simply visited your favorite stores’ websites to peruse electronic flyers.

But over the years at The Penny Hoarder, we’ve learned one important lesson: Just because a store tells you an item is a great deal doesn’t mean it actually is.

Sale ads often inflate the original prices on items that have been discounted in order to show you a better “percent off” price.

Sometimes those discounts are still a great deal. But it takes some extra research to know for sure.

This year, we want to help you save time and money on your holiday shopping.

We pored over the Black Friday ads for 11 major stores: Walmart, Target, Kohl’s, Macy’s, JCPenney, Best Buy, Costco, BJ’s, Sam’s Club, Kmart and Sears.  

We took note of items that are frequently discounted during the holiday season — the ones that stores advertise as being 40-50% off. Then, we checked those sale prices, not just across other Black Friday advertisements but also against the manufacturers’ usual prices.

A few questions you’re probably asking out loud to your screen:

Why aren’t any kids’ toys listed?

Most children’s toys aren’t expensive enough to warrant going out of your way to get a markdown at a store you don’t usually shop at. Stick with the convenience of your usual spot for kids’ toys, and you’ll reap worthy savings.

Why aren’t any clothes listed?

Most large discount and major department stores advertise sales on their own brands during Black Friday, so you can’t compare the same exact item among stores. If you like a certain store’s brand of clothing for kids or adults, you’ll be able to make the best judgment on its sales.

Where are all the TVs and laptops?

Black Friday specials on TVs and laptops are almost never worth a glance. These deals are usually special ordered for the shopping weekend and offer less robust specifications than the options you’ll find at other times of year.

Based on our very particular criteria, we came up with this short list of the best Black Friday deals for 2018.

Best Deals on Home Gadgets

Amazon Echo Dot
Photo courtesy of Amazon

Amazon Echo (Retail: $99.99)

Best Buy: $69.99

Target: $69.00

Amazon Echo Dot 2nd Generation (Retail: $39.99)

BJ’s and Best Buy: $19.99

Amazon Echo Dot 3rd Generation (Retail: $49.99)

Best Buy: $24.99

Target: $24.00

Amazon Echo 2nd Generation (Retail: $99.99)

Best Buy: $69.99

Target: $69.00

Amazon Fire TV Stick (Retail: $39.99)

Target, Best Buy, BJ’s, Amazon: $24.99

Google Home (Retail: $129)

Best Buy: $79.99

Target: $79.00

Google Home Hub with Google Assistant (Retail: $149)

Walmart and Best Buy: $99.99

Target: $99.00

Google Home Mini (Retail: $49)

Target, Best Buy, Walmart: $25

If you want to save even more, then head to Costco and stock up with a 3-pack for $99.99 in store or $69.99 online.

Roku Ultra Streaming Media Player (Retail: $99.99)

Target and Best Buy: $49.99

Roku Streaming Stick (Retail: $49.99)

Target and Best Buy: $29.99

JBL Flip 4 Bluetooth Speaker (Retail: $99.95)

Target and Best Buy: $59.99

Best Deals on Small Kitchen Appliances

KitchenAid Stand Mixers
Photo courtesy of KitchenAid

KitchenAid Stand Mixer Model KV25G0XSL (Retail: $499.99)

Best Buy and Target: $219.99

KitchenAid Stand Mixer Model K45SSOB (Retail: $339.99)

Macy’s: $189.99

Ninja Professional Blender Model BL610 (Retail: $99.99)

Target: $59.99

Keurig K-Elite Single Serve Coffee Maker (Retail: $169.99)

Best Buy, Kohl’s, Target: $129.99

Best Deals on Small Electronics

Photo Courtesy of Beats by DRE

Beats PowerBeats Wireless Headphones (Retail: $199.95)

Target: $89.99

Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones (Retail: $199.95)

Best Buy, Sam’s Club, Target: $99.99

Walmart: $99.00

Philips Norelco OneBlade Pro Wet/Dry Trimmer (Retail: $79.95)

Best Buy, Kohl’s, Target: $39.99

Philips Sonicare Protective Clean 4100 Rechargeable Toothbrush (Retail: $59.99)

Target: $34.99

Best Deals on Vacuums and Carpet Cleaners

iRobot Roomba 600 Series
Photo courtesy of iRobot

Dyson Ball Animal 2 Bagless Upright Vacuum (Retail: $499.99)

Best Buy and Kohl’s: $299.99

Dyson V7 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum (Retail: $399.99)

Best Buy and Kohl’s: $249.99

Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away Upright Vacuum (Retail: $299.99)

Kohl’s: $199.99

iRobot Roomba 675 Wi-Fi Connected Robot Vacuum (Retail: $299.99)

Best Buy and Target: $199.99

Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner (Retail: $199.99)

Best Buy and Target: $99.99

Best Deals on Health and Fitness Gadgets

Fitbit Charge 2
Photo courtesy of Fitbit

Apple Watch Series 3 with GPS (Retail: $279)

Target: $199.99

Apple Watch Series 3 with GPS Plus Cellular (Retail: $379)

Target: $299.99

Fitbit Alta HR Heart Rate Wristband Smart Watch (Retail: $129.95)

BJ’s: $79.99

Best Buy and Target: $79.95

Fitbit Versa Smartwatch (Retail: $199.95)

BJ’s: $149.99

Best Buy and JCPenney $149.95

Sam’s Club: $149.86

Target and Walmart: $149.00

Fitbit Charge 3 Advanced Fitness Tracker (Retail: $149.95)

BJ’s: $119.99

Best Buy, JCPenney, Target: $119.95

Fitbit Ace Activity Tracker for Kids (Retail: $99.95)

Kohl’s: $59.99

Best Buy: $59.95

Samsung Gear S3 Frontier Smartwatch 48mm (Retail: $299.99)

Best Buy and Target: $199.99

Garmin Vivofit Jr. 2 Activity Tracker for Kids (Retail: $79)

Target: $49.99

That’s all folks! But If you’re not seeing the items on your shopping list, then check out our tips for spotting the best Black Friday Deals.

Lisa Rowan is a senior writer and producer at The Penny Hoarder. Think she missed an awesome deal? Share the details on Twitter @lisatella.

Jessica Gray contributed to this article.